Huge increase in complaints about NI health services

By Gillian Crotty

There was a 63 per cent increase in the number of people contacting the Patient and Client Council to make a complaint about health and social care services in Northern Ireland over the past year.

The complaints report is produced every year, and the most recent figures show that 1,935 people used the complaints support service to make complaints of medical negligence, about treatment, the level of care provided, delays in treatment, and most commonly, about communication and staff attitude.

The quality of medical care provided in hospitals in Northern Ireland has been under the spotlight since the start of the year when a major incident was declared at the Accident and Emergency department at Royal Victoria hospital in Belfast, and with the later disclosure of patients deaths that were contributed to by delays in treatment or hospital errors.

The Patient and Client Council says the health and social services are learning from the complaints raised, but calls on them to make it easier for patients to raise concerns with them.

If you have suffered injury or loss as a result of medical negligence or a delay in treatment at a hospital in Northern Ireland, and want to speak to a compensation claims solicitor about your options, contact Wilson Nesbitt by calling 0800 840 9289.